Jones Jr. To Fight Lacy In June
By Eric Thomas:
The latest big news gossip item is that Roy Jones Jr. (53-5, 39 KOs) could very well be fighting super middleweight contender Jeff Lacy (24-2, 17 KOs) in June. In an interview at Boxingtalkâ€™s website, Jones, 40, said â€œHeâ€™s [Jeff Lacy] a good fighter and a strong puncher and thatâ€™s why he wants to fight me because heâ€™s a puncher.â€ Lacy, 31, later said that heâ€™s also interested in a fight with Jones. However, before that can happen, Lacy has an April 10th match-up with Otis Griffin in Tampa, Florida.
Jones had said recently that heâ€™s interested in facing the winner of the Carl Froch vs. Jermain Taylor bout, which takes place on April 25th. A fight against the winner of that bout would appear to be the wiser decision for Jones, because there would be the WBC super middleweight title on the line if Jones could wrangle a deal with whoever emerges as the winner.
However, few boxing experts are giving Jones much of any chance of beating either Froch or Taylor because of their talent, power and youth, so it might be a better idea for Jones to fight Lacy in that case.
Lacy recently lost a lopsided 12-round unanimous decision to Jermain Taylor in a WBC Super Middleweight Title Eliminator in November 2008. Lacy was only rarely competitive in the fight, and was stunned on a couple of occasions by big right hands from Taylor.
For his part, Roy is coming off his best performance in seven years in stopping former super middleweight contender Omar Sheika last Saturday night in Pensacola, Florida. It also coincidentally was the same year he recorded his last knockout victory.
Itâ€™s incredible that Jones has gone that long in between knockout victories, because heâ€™d always been consistent in knockout fighters out during his career. However, that dry spell coincides with Jones moving up in weight and defeating John Ruiz to win the WBA heavyweight title in 2003.
As it turns out, that bout probably cost Jones in the long run, as he was forced to strip off most of the muscle he had put on for the fight in moving back down to the light heavyweight division six months later. He lost his next fight to Antonio Tarver by a 2nd round knockout. From there, Jones hasnâ€™t looked like the same fighter he was prior to moving up to heavyweight, losing three and winning four.
Lacy is badly in need of a win over a credible opponent right about now to help out how his career. Heâ€™s currently ranked at number #8 in the IBF, but a win over Jones would give Lacy the biggest win of his career and a good payday at the same time.
Right now, Jones would have to be considered to be the favorite in such a bout due to his fast hands, elusiveness and ability to throw punches from all angles. Lacy was badly over his head in a 12-round shut out against Joe Calzaghe in 2006, and had big problems with Calzagheâ€™s quickness and defensive skills.
Jones may not be on Calzagheâ€™s level, but he has a lot of the same skills that he can bring to the table in a bout with Lacy.
If Jones can stay off the ropes and avoid getting nailed by one of Lacyâ€™s big right hands, I can see Jones winning this fight without too many problems. He doesnâ€™t have to worry about Lacyâ€™s once dangerous left hook, because that weapon has been neutralized after a tear to Lacyâ€™s rotator cuff in 2006 in a bout against Vitali Tsypko. The injury was surgically repaired but unfortunately Lacyâ€™s power doesnâ€™t appear to have returned to the previously injured shoulder.
I'm gonna have to be killed before I lose, and I ain't going to die easy - Muhammad Ali